on January 20, 2017 | Last updated January 21, 2017
Frank ZappaPackard Goose
Release Type: User Audio Type: Single-track Reductions: Yes (Auto/CAT) Pitched Vocals: Yes Vocals Gender: Male (3)
"Packard Goose" officially appeared on the 1979 album Joe's Garage, but some of its parts were used on-stage as early as October 1975. The piece is more of a suite than a cohesive song. The title refers to the ornament of a defunct car model.
The story line: music has been made illegal by the government. Joe, coming out of jail, started to dream the guitar solos he couldn't play anymore. Now he is able to dream up complete songs, including lyrics, and even dream of a rock music press he can spit at. The song feels more autobiographical than anything else on the album, Joe's attacks on rock journalists echoing Zappa's own thoughts on the subject. This part of the piece follows a fast tempo. Things boil down and a delicate melody reminiscent of the main motif in "Outside Now" precedes the re-entrance of Mary who reads the verse that became one of Zappa fans' favorite: "Information is not knowledge/Knowledge is not wisdom/ Wisdom is not truth/Truth is not beauty/Beauty is not love/Love is not music/Music is THE BEST." This recitation was premiered as part of the instrumental piece "Black Napkins" in 1975 and turned out to be the most moving moment of the tribute concert Zappa's Universe. The piece then drifts into yet another xenochronous guitar solo. A short reprise of the main theme leads to a complete change of pace as the song becomes a '50s doo wop spoof.